Software development Dream Team

When you’re not even a professional illustrator and somebody asks you to draw something for the cover of their magazine, how can you refuse?

I used to work on the same floor as the folks at Software Development magazine, so they used to see some comic book style drawings around my cubicle. When they came up with the idea to do a story on the “ideal dream team” of software development personalities/characters, they got in touch and the rest is history. The cover ran on the April 2005 issue of the magazine.

SD Magazine

One interesting thing about this pic is that it was done almost entirely in Photoshop. I drew each character in pencil on a separate piece of paper and then scanned them in. Then I worked on the layout by moving around the characters using layers in Photoshop, and I sent my version to the art director at the magazine to do the same. When we had a final layout we were happy with, I did all the ink lines and all the coloring in Photoshop, using a Wacom tablet. What’s cool is that this way the pencil sketches survived untouched — in fact, can see them as interior art in the magazine itself. Thanks to art director Dwight Been for his input.

If you’re curious, you can see a large JPEG of an earlier version of this artwork with the original colors intact. The art director thought they were a little too punchy for the final cover, but I like this version better — my original concept was that the big guy’s body was made entirely out of chewed bubblegum!

One thought on “Software development Dream Team

  1. Neil,

    As you’ve probably heard the Adventures of Action Item was a big hit in many military circles. I happened to be the Y2K Action Officer for the Marine Corps in the late 90’s as we prepared for the impending storm. I was responsible for tracking and reporting on 134 Class I Systems to HQMC (the Commandant of the Marine Corps). Today a friend and mentor of mine waxed nostalgic on your satire and with a bit of searching I wound up here. I’ve always used art and humor in my life and just wanted to say thanks.

    Semper Fi,
    Hank Salmans
    Owner/Founder Devil Dog Brew
    Major, USMC (Retired)

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